ELMSFORD, N.Y. (September 30, 2014) – The MGA hosted a Public Golf Forum at Bethpage State Park for public golf facility managers, professionals and superintendents as a part of the MGA’s educational series. The day focused on ways that leaders in the golf community can grow the game, encourage new players to take up the sport and engage with those who are already regular golfers.Click hereto learn more.
The MGA has an increased focus in promoting public golf, and has spent a considerable amount of time and energy focusing on our Member Clubs that offer public play and ways that the MGA can assist those clubs. A part of this focus involves determining some of the “hot button” issues affecting public golf in the Met Area and discovering ways that the MGA can work closer with Met Area public golf facilities to generate more play and interest.
At Bethpage, the MGA’s Director of Public Golf Development, Kevin Kline, spoke about the increased efforts of the MGA in the public golf sphere. In 2014, the MGA began the process of working with clubs to offer club membership packages online. Clubs that participated were able to bundle products and services with an MGA membership through mgagolf.org at no cost. The MGA also partnered with Citi to provide special discounts and offers at many courses throughout the Met Area for MGA members who are Citi card holders. In addition, the MGA annually presents at local golf shows, educating the public on the MGA and ways to become a member, such as joining an eClub.
The forum also featured presentation from experts in the field who enlightened the audience on ways that they can manage and grow their public golf facilities and courses:
Davis Oatis, Director, Northeast Region, USGA Green Section, presented on sustainability in golf course management. He focused on three aspects of sustainability in golf: environmental, economic and enjoyment. Oatis touched on different ways that courses can manage their time and resources to focus on what’s really important, and shared some of the USGA’s philosophies and resources on this matter.
Jim Keegan, Managing Principal at JJKeegan+ and author of the Business of Golf Book Series, spoke about his successful approach to overcoming challenges and issues that public golf courses face, such as oversupply, variable weather and growing expenses. He provided his theories for create value for golfers based on a foundation that ensures that the financial potential of the course is optimized.
Jonathan Gold, Player Development Regional Manger NY Market Area, PGA of America, presented on the importance of player development, including strategies to bring in new golfers and increase the benefits that existing golfers take in.
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